Management of Adverse Effects of Second-generation Antipsychotics in Youth

Marie Raffin, Marianna Gianitelli, Angèle Consoli, Olivier Bonnot, Marie Line Menard, Florence Askenazy, Claudine Laurent, David Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs) have been proven effective in treating several psychiatric conditions in children and adolescents. These atypical antipsychotic medications are being used with increasing frequency in Europe, the U.S., and Canada. We aim to expose short-term and long-term adverse effects (AEs) of SGAs in youth populations and to provide management recommendations for major adverse effects. These proposals are based on (1) an in-depth literature review of both short- and long-term studies on the use of SGAs in youth; (2) our own clinical experience in managing such treatment in this population; and (3) the work of the Canadian Alliance for Monitoring Effectiveness and Safety of Antipsychotics in Children (CAMESA). AEs are frequent in youth treated with SGAs, and include primarily weight gain, metabolic and hormonal changes, somnolence, extrapyramidal syndrome, and QT modifications. However, frequency and type of AE vary according to compound, and each compound’s AE profile is specific. Acknowledgment of these distinct profiles should aid clinicians in making treatment decisions. After an SGA is prescribed, routine monitoring of AEs is recommended, and should an AE occur, clinical management recommendations should be followed. To date, there are no clinically validated monitoring recommendations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-105
Number of pages22
JournalCurrent Treatment Options in Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescence
  • Adverse effects
  • Childhood
  • Second-generation antipsychotics
  • Youth


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